Read about a few key moments since Claire and Jim took over the pub in 2007…

  • Took over in January – very little existing trade with chequered history of fleeting past owners.
  • James Nixon joined us as head chef on 1st July.
  • Refurbished the one existing B&B room and created two other ensuite letting rooms. Achieved 4 star rating from Visit Britain.
  • Held first Summer party for the village at the end of July with a ‘Hawaiian Tropic’ fancy dress theme.
  • Started a monthly pub quiz, still running.
  • Became a ‘family business’ with the birth of George Alfred on 18th December (born a week early on the busiest week of the year).
  • Summer party in July – the theme was ‘The Wild West’.
  • Refurbished the bar including the old flagstones and undertook some sandblasting to restore more of the original features.
  • Created The Ebrington Arms Football Tournament in September to raise funds for the local Recreation ground – pub teams from across the North Cotswolds fight it out for ‘The Yubberton Cup’. Veteran match also.
  • Pub included in The Good Beer Guide & The Good Food Guide, rumored to be for the first time in the pub’s history.
  • Halloween party – lots of fancy dress fun.
  • The pub held a beer tent at the Village fete for the first time, hailed a big success, raising around £300 for the village charities – now annual charity raiser.
  • Folk music night started at the pub – still runs on the first Monday of the month.
  • Won CAMRA North Cotswold Pub of the Year – another first for the pub, beating stiff competition from around 90 other pubs in the area to win the coveted title.
  • Recommended in Michelin Guide for food – an independently reviewed guide for foodies, another first for the pub.
  • Summer party in July – the theme was Pirates of the Caribbean.
  • Started monthly food speciality evenings. A chance for our chefs to show off some of their skills and focus on flavours from particular country or regions.
  • The Ebrington Arms Football Tournament II.
  • Included in The Good Beer Guide & The Good Food Guide again.
  • AA rosette awarded for food for first time in pub’s history.
  • Added to the 2010 Michelin Guide, ‘Eating Out in Pubs’.
  • Pub’s first ever Arm-wrestling competition (May). Hosted by UK champion, Julian Cini.
  • Cheese & wine party in April.
  • Won CAMRA North Cotswold Pub of the Year – rumored to be in top 5 finalists within whole of the South-West region.
  • Recommended in Michelin Guide for food.
  • Ebrington Arms Football Tournament in September.
  • Inclusions in The Good Beer Guide, The Good Food Guide and AA rosette scheme re-awarded.
  • Recommended in Michelin Guide for food.
  • Won CAMRA North Cotswold Pub of the Year for the third time, said by CAMRA to be ‘highly unusual’ for a pub to consistently beat off its opponents for three years on the trot. Again told that we are a strong contender to win the title for the whole of the South-West region.
  • Major building work and renovations started in March following the granting of planning permission – built new cold store, office and kitchen and extended the dining room into the old kitchen and owners accommodation areas. This is a big change for the pub and its village so we are celebrating with a big launch party on September 1st – all locals invited. The facility will allow us to cater for bigger parties and take more bookings. We hope the extra tables will avoid us turning so many customers away (as we still have the majority of first come first served tables in the bar as retaining our pub atmosphere remains a priority).
  • The Ebrington Arms Football Tournament is back in September with the addition this year of the local PTFA’s involvement to replace the veteran match. The vets claim they’re past it so we’re having a mini junior tournament instead and refreshments available and fun for children.
  • Given the ongoing recession doom and gloom we decided to revive the pub Thrift Club this Spring to help people save towards Christmas. It used to be a strong club at the pub many years ago.
  • Big year for romance in the pub – at least three proposals and two weddings took place here. Couples staying for the weekend were always coming downstairs in the morning telling us their exciting news – bound to be more weddings at the pub. Our second couple to get married at the pub decided they loved Ebrington so much they have since moved here and are now a happy addition to our village community.
  • Included in The Good Food Guide, Michelin Guide, Good Beer Guide and awarded an AA rosette awarded again.
  • Family business expanding in other areas with baby number two due on November 27th.
  • Renovated and opened second pub, Oxfordshire’s The Killingworth Castle.
  • Runner up in CAMRA North Cotswold Pub of the Year 2012.
  • Changed the old pub accommodation into a further two ensuite letting rooms – bringing the total to 5 now available.
  • Started brewing our own beer. We now have Yubby and Yawnie bitters available at both of our pubs.
  • Held our first ever Beer Festival. Octoberfest was a month long celebration that culminated in a weekend of music and 10 real ale pumps along the bar
  • Ran a charity live auction to raise money for the village primary school and raised over £10,000.
  • Completed our first year at sister pub, The Killingworth Castle, which in its first year was awarded 2 AA Rosettes and a Michelin Bib Gourmand. It was also named Restaurant of the Year by The Oxford Times and was listed in the Sunday Times best 500 UK places to eat.
  • We won North Cotswolds CAMRA Pub of the Year award… for the third time. YAY!!!
  • Renovations continued at The Killingworth Castle and we did a huge amount of landscaping to give our Oxfordshire pub the ‘kerb appeal’ it deserved. The Killy was also awarded ‘Pub of the Year’ by The Oxford Times & Mail.
  • Meanwhile at The Ebrington Arms we were busy developing another craft ale. ‘Goldie’ was born, giving us a stunning pale ale so we now have three beers under our belt.
  • Ran a monthly acoustic music session in the bar with artists from all over the world coming to perform. This supplemented our ever popular Folk Night (first Monday of the month)
  • In October we ran an apple pressing day in the beer garden where everyone could bring their apples and start making juice….or CIDER!!! This month also saw Yubbyfest – a beer festival weekend with loads of bands that was a huge success! We even squeezed in an afternoon Ceilidh for the kids.
  • We won an AA Gold Breakfast Award for our fine full English and menu that includes eggs benedict and homemade pancakes, yum!
  • Refreshed our bar snacks menu so we can offer walkers and the like something from 9am in the morning right through til close!
  • And our ‘Yubby’ bitter was shortlisted for a Cotswold Food and Drink Award too!
  • We were awarded Two AA Rosettes for the FIFTH YEAR RUNNING! So chuffed.
  • In April, we helped organise a charity fundraiser and the first ever ‘Cotswold Charity Cycle’, which ran between our two pubs and back to raise funds for our local school.
  • Our beer garden was noted in the Telegraph’s Top 5 Cosiest Pubs in the UK. Cotswold Life magazine also listed us in their Top 5 pubs to visit across the Cotswolds.
  • We refurbished and opened eight new letting rooms at our sister pub, The Killingworth Castle, near Blenheim Palace.
  • We ran the bar at the village’s first ever Farm Sunday, raising money for our village school and had a great ‘Meet the Winemaker’ evening ensuring our drinkers are as looked after as our foodies of course!
  • A proposal was launched to close our village primary school and a big fight to oppose it began. The pub was actively involved (having kids there and being our other heartbeat in keeping our village alive and thriving).
  • In October we put on a huge charity supper for MSF (Medicins Sans Frontiers) to help the refugee crisis and managed to donate over £5,000 to the charity!
  • Underwent refurbishment of rooms and all public areas, including our gorgeous small cosy pub bar being painted chocolate brown! Staff were horrified but the landlady was dead cert and it looks so gorgeous. It’s even been featured in an interior design magazine.
  • Our Annual Cheltenham Races Preview raised over £1,500 back in March for The Injured Jockey Fund – and to raise funds to keep the fight going to save Ebrington Primary School. It was a great evening with Talksport’s Rupert Bell and Milton Harris hosting.
  • We held our first ever Asparagus Feast to celebrate our local delicacy which was a great success. Four courses, including the pudding! We had a talk from Andrew Drinkwater who produces most of our ‘grass’ as its called locally. We’re so lucky to be able to have it grown in the fields around the pub where it can be picked in the morning and on our plates the same day!
  • Huge welcome to a new kitchen crew with the renowned Sonya Kidney at the helm as Executive Chef for both The Ebrington Arms and our sister pub, The Killingworth Castle. We pinched the Head Chef of the Kingham Plough, Ben Dulley, who joins local chef, Chris Ellis.
  • We finally managed to Save Ebrington School – a huge campaign was run by the community and parents and we are so delighted as it really is a Cotswold gem in our village – and has the Ofsted report to prove it! In July we celebrated the school’s 175th birthday are are all delighted to now be focussing on its fabulous future.
  • Penelope Keith lunched in the pub and even got behind the bar with bar manager Chris, while she was filming in Ebrington for her ‘Hidden Villages’ series on Channel 4. Look out on TV this Autumn.

Comments are closed.

Switch to our mobile site